For the second year running, the Beethoven Intercollegiate Piano Competition returns to its original birthplace in the ACF - a competition which gives AQCF Members the opportunity to spot top-performers of the future. At the same time, it is a sort of competition as to which leading Music College can produce the best Beethoven interpreter since each candidate has already been awarded an internal Beethoven Prize by the respective institution which the candidate has been chosen to represent. Sponsored by the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe, now in its 19th year, by Carola Grindea and Malcolm Troup, it had British pianist Kendall Taylor as its first President, a role now occupied by Alfred Brendel KBE. Its aim is to promote authentic performances of Beethoven’s works for piano, which comprise 60% of his total output, and to stimulate research into their interpretation and performance practice. Moreover, in an age of cultural relativity, where The Pet Shop Boys are reckoned on the same level as Beethoven, it has become necessary to defend cultural values which previously went without saying.
The afternoon begins at 2.00pm with candidates grouped into threes, each playing a short obligatory Bagatelle followed by a Beethoven piano sonata of the candidate’s own choice. By 5.30pm the Jury, comprising Professor Alan Walker, Dr. Murray McLachlan and Prof.MalcolmTroup, will withdraw to consider their verdict followed by the Presentation of Prizes at 6:00pm, during which time refreshments will be served. Apart from the cash awards, the First Prize carries with it the prestigious ‘Beethoven Medal’ of the Worshipful Company of Musicians which the Company’s Master, Alderman Dr.Andrew Parmley, will be on hand to present. There will also be an Audience Prize.